Defining mechanisms of action of novel alpha-conotoxins at nicotinic receptor-channels (ARC Discovery Project administered by RMIT University) (2010–2014)

Abstract:
Marine snails from the waters off the Australian coast produce an amazing variety of mini-proteins in their venoms called conotoxins that they use to capture prey. These conotoxins bind very specifically to receptors in our body associated with the transmission of nerve signals. We will use natural and synthetically modified conotoxins to selectively block particular types of neuronal 'receptors' to gain a greater understanding of how the nervous system functions. This knowledge will help in the design of new drugs to treat a variety of diseases and disorders. Essentially we will use a chemical armoury developed by the cone snail to design state-of-the-art mini-protein drugs.
Grant type:
Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University
Researchers:
  • ARC Laureate Fellow - Group Leader
    Institute for Molecular Bioscience
    Affiliated Professor
    School of Biomedical Sciences
    Faculty of Medicine
Funded by:
Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology University